Pubdate: Mon, 20 Jan 2014
Source: Metro (Edmonton, CN AB)
Copyright: 2014 Metro Canada
Author: Ryan Tumilty
Page: 3


Medical Marijuana. Legal changes mean users won't be allowed to grow
at home

The police agency tasked with uncovering marijuana grow operations
doesn't plan to aggressively pursue medical marijuana grow-ops when
the law changes later this year, but they won't be turning a blind eye

Michael Tucker, a spokesperson for the Alberta Law Enforcement
Response Team (ALERT), said that they believe the change in laws will
make it easier for police to operate.

"I think the changes that are coming forth in April will help
eliminate some of those confusions and make police work easier," he

The federal government is changing the legislation around medicinal
marijuana, eliminating the exceptions that allow medicinal marijuana
users to grow their own supply.

After March 31, medicinal marijuana users will have to order marijuana
from approved growers.

Tucker said right now when ALERT's Green Teams investigate grow-ops,
one of the early steps they take is to check with Health Canada.

"In a lot of instances (we) do get a Crime Stoppers tip about a
potential grow-op and in the beginning stages of our investigation we
will be made aware that it is a medicinal grow-op," he said.

Tucker said in those cases the team stops the investigation, but after
March 31, they won't have to check with Health Canada because all
grow-ops will be illegal.

"Our job, our role, is to enforce the law. This is obviously going to
impact what happens and the current status of grow ops."
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